West Mids firms urged to take advantage of looming exports 'tipping point' (From Bromsgrove Advertiser)
Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting BA NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
West Mids firms urged to take advantage of looming exports 'tipping point'
7:10am Wednesday 8th August 2012 in Business Daily
HSBC Black Country and Shropshire area commercial director Kevin Skym has urged businesses in the region to take advantage of a "tipping point" he says is set to take place in international trade over the next five years.
HSBC Commercial Bank is forecasting a tipping point in the balance of trade power, where imports will grow faster than exports in emerging markets by 2017.
HSBC’s Global Connections Trade Forecast predicts that the rate of growth in imports will exceed exports in markets including China, India and Brazil.
The report also forecasts that the UK is set to increase its international business activity by 66% by 2026.
For the UK, exports are expected to exceed imports as businesses make the most of the opportunities created by the subsequent increase in demand for goods and services from emerging markets.
Government figures show that the West Midlands is one of the UK’s key exporting centres, with exports growing 11.7% to £20.7 billion in the year to the end of March.
Emerging markets also play a crucial role in West Midlands exports, with China recently overtaking Germany as the region’s second largest export partner.
Kevin Skym says: “Emerging economies that have traditionally been major exporters have seen imports increase in recent years as their economies have matured. We have seen a rising middle class in the likes of China and India and this naturally creates demand for goods and services.
“Taking advantage of overseas opportunities can offer Wolverhampton and Shropshire-based businesses significant prospects for growth."
He added: "The success stories are showing what can be done and there are many across the region. However, more can be done in the region and, indeed, the wider West Midlands.
"Businesses in the region cannot afford to be spectators on these significant trade changes. The message for international businesses, small or large, is to understand the long-term picture.
"Those in developed nations have to look beyond their borders at the opportunities in rapidly growing markets, while emerging market businesses need to access the growth of these new trade powerhouses closer to home.”
HSBC’s Global Connections data also reveals that UK trade growth is likely to be greatest in sectors which correlate closely with economic development. Automotives, Non-Crude Oil, Medicines and Printing are the sectors which the research predicts will dominate world trade over the next 15 years with emerging countries leading the growth.
• Brazil is expected to see car imports rise more than 13% over the next five years, with exports up 4.9% by 2016
• Chinese imports of cars are expected to rise by nearly 12% by 2016
• Asian and Latin American imports of medicines are expected to rise by 7% and Latin American imports of Biopharmaceuticals by more than 11% to 2016
• UK’s fastest growing export sectors are biopharma, auto engines, petroleum gases and telephony equipment. This meets the demand from the emerging markets.